British Home Secretary Amber Rudd has rejected French plans to scrap border control deals in Calais and allow thousands of refugees to move from the ‘Jungle’ camp to the English port town of Dover.
The disagreement comes as it emerges more than 27,000 people were arrested by UK police in the last three years for suspected illegal migration to Britain.
Rudd is set to reject French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve’s attempts to end the Le Touquet agreement, which allows for British border agents to work on the other side of the English Channel, especially at points of entry and exit such as the port of Calais and Eurostar terminals.
Among those calling for the camp to be moved onto British soil is former head of state Nicholas Sarkozy.
“I’m demanding the opening of a centre in Britain to deal with asylum seekers in Britain, so that Britain can do the work that concerns them,”Sarkozy said after announcing he would once again run for president at next year’s election.
“The Jungle should not be in Calais or anywhere else, because this is a republic and those with no rights to be here should return to their country.”
Sarkozy is supported by Calais’ regional president Xavier Bertrand, who wants UK asylum seekers to apply at a “hotspot” in France, rather than gather at the northern French town.
Migrant support groups meanwhile insist the borders should simply be open to the millions seeking refuge from war and extreme poverty.